Emerald Tidings

February 2018

  1. Join Us for the 27th Annual Emerald Isle St. Patrick's Festival - March 17, 2018!
  2. 5th Annual Emerald Isle Marathon, Half-Marathon, and 5K Races - March 10, 2018! Run OR Volunteer!
  3. Town EMS Department to Begin Providing Service March 1 - Volunteers Welcome!
  4. New NC 58 Roundabout On Schedule to Open to Traffic By March 1
  5. EIPD Presents "The Ins and Outs of Roundabouts" Information Sessions
  6. Military Testing New F-35B Fighter Jets at Bogue Field
  7. NCDOT Considering NC 58 Improvements in "Downtown" Area
  8. Emerald Isle Bridge Guardrail Installation Scheduled for Winter 2018-19
  9. Fire Department Coordinating "Host Family" Housing for Summer Lifeguards
  10. Comprehensive Land Use Plan Certified by State of NC
  11. Sponsor a Beach Swing!
  12. 4th Annual Bike The Banks Rides - May 5, 2018!
  13. Did You Know?


Join Us for the 27th Annual Emerald Isle St. Patrick's Festival - March 17, 2018!

The Town's signature annual event is back for the 27th year, and will be held on the actual St. Patrick's Day this year!  The Emerald Isle St. Patrick's Festival is again proudly presented by Transportation Impact, and will again be held at the Emerald Plantation shopping center. Admission to the festival and parking is free.  

This year's festival will feature over 75 arts and crafts vendors, food vendors, amusement rides, face painters, and many other fun, family-oriented activities.  Questions regarding the festival should be directed to Emerald Isle Parks and Recreation at 252-354-6350 or to Parks and Recreation Director Alesia Sanderson at asanderson@emeraldisle-nc.org .


5th Annual Emerald Isle Marathon, Half-Marathon, and 5K Races - March 10, 2018! Run OR Volunteer!


We hope to see you running in Emerald Isle on March 10!  This great annual event has attracted approximately 1,500 runners each year, and has raised more than $200,000 for bicycle path improvements and health-related charities over the past 4 years.  

This year's event will benefit the Emerald Isle bicycle path and Little Pink Houses of Hope, an organization devoted to providing assistance to breast cancer victims and their families.  To learn more, and to sign up for the marathon (26.2 miles), half-marathon (13.1 miles), and 5k (3.1 miles) races, please visit http://www.emeraldislerun.com/ .  There's no better place to achieve your running goals than in Emerald Isle - bring your friends and family and make it a great spring weekend at the beach!  

If you'd like to volunteer on race day, we'd love to have your help out on the race course or at the start / finish line - all volunteers will receive a free t-shirt!  To sign yourself or your group up, please contact Volunteer Coordinator Dorla Pake at cpake@ec.rr.com



Town EMS Department to Begin Providing Service March 1 - Volunteers Welcome!


Town and EI EMS, Inc. officials have been working diligently in recent months to transition emergency medical services to a Town department, and all transition tasks are nearly complete. Beginning March 1, emergency medical services will no longer be provided by a separate non-profit organization, but rather by employees of the Town of Emerald Isle.  All current employees of the non-profit organization have been offered employment with the Town EMS Department, and the new department will operate from the Town-owned EMS station adjacent to the Fire Station. 

The Town expresses its sincere thanks to the dedicated men and women who have served as volunteers at EI EMS, Inc. over the past several decades - from the very early days up to and including today (and tomorrow!).  Our community is grateful for your contributions, and for the dedication and commitment that built a high quality squad in Emerald Isle.  Emergency medical services have steadily evolved over the years, and the March 1 transition date represents the continued evolution of these vital services in Emerald Isle.  The Town looks forward to continuing to provide high quality EMS services and additional service enhancements in the future! 

The Town welcomes any and all individuals interested in volunteering with the new Town EMS Department in the future.  To become a part of the team, please visit the EMS Station at any time to express your interest and learn more!

New NC 58 Roundabout On Schedule to Open to Traffic By March 1

Construction of the new NC 58 roundabout at the Mallard Drive intersection is nearing completion, and will be open to traffic no later than March 1.  This new traffic feature is being constructed as an alternative to an originally proposed new traffic signal and also as a "pilot project" to enable the community to evaluate roundabouts for additional locations in Emerald Isle in the future (that have been recommended by NCDOT).  The new roundabout is being financed by the developer of the new Publix grocery store and overseen by NCDOT.  



EIPD Presents "The Ins and Outs of Roundabouts" Information Sessions


In anticipation of the opening of the new NC 58 roundabout, the Emerald Isle Police Department is hosting three information sessions on roundabouts during February.  The first session was held on Monday, February 5, and additional sessions are scheduled for Friday, February 16 at 6 pm and Saturday, February 24 at 10 am.  These sessions will be held in the Town Board Meeting Room adjacent to the Police Station.  Come on out and learn more about "The Ins and Outs of Roundabouts"! 

Military Testing New F-35B Fighter Jets at Bogue Field 


nullMCAS Cherry Point and MCALF Bogue (across Bogue Sound from Emerald Isle) will eventually host several squadrons of the new F-35B joint strike fighter jets that will replace the AV-8B Harrier jets sometime in the next decade.  MCALF Bogue is an important training facility for military pilots, and is unique in its capabilities on the East Coast.    

Visiting F-35B aircraft teams from NAS Patuxent River have been conducting tests at MCALF Bogue during January and February, offering a preview of this new state-of-the-art military aircraft over Emerald Isle.  The Town continues to maintain a cooperative relationship with MCAS Cherry Point and MCALF Bogue, and works closely with military officials to minimize noise and other impacts on Emerald Isle residents and visitors while also promoting the readiness of these vital military personnel and aircraft.  

For more information about F-35B testing over Emerald Isle, please contact the MCAS Cherry Point Noise Hotline at 252-466-1092 to learn more and/or express concerns.  

NCDOT Considering NC 58 Improvements in "Downtown" Area 


The 2018 -2027 State Transportation Improvement Program (STIP) includes the construction of improvements to NC 58 between the Welcome Center and the US Post Office in the "downtown" area of Emerald Isle.  NCDOT is currently evaluating potential improvements to improve traffic flow and aesthetics in this area of Emerald Isle, and is primarily focused on new lanes, curb and gutter, and traffic signal improvements in this area.  NCDOT plans to share potential designs and solicit public input later this spring and summer.  The STIP includes construction funding for this project in 2025, however, NCDOT and Town officials are optimistic that construction funding can be identified much sooner than 2025. 

Emerald Isle Bridge Guardrail Installation Scheduled for Winter 2018-19


NCDOT is still planning to install new, higher guardrails on the Emerald Isle bridge, and has scheduled this work for next winter (2018-19).  This work was originally planned for 2016, but was delayed until later in 2018.  NCDOT will also be completing additional work on the underside of the Emerald Isle bridge at that time.   

The new guardrails will have a similar appearance as those on the Atlantic Beach - Morehead City bridge.  The current concrete railings are approximately 28 inches high, and the new steel railings will extend an additional 26 inches, resulting in a total guard rail height of 54 inches.  The photo below shows a simulated view with the new guard rails in place.

Fire Department Coordinating "Host Family" Housing for Summer Lifeguards


Town staff are already hard at work gearing up for the 2018 summer season, and will soon be recruiting seasonal lifeguards to serve at fixed lifeguard stands at the Town's regional beach access facilities and provide roving services on all-terrain vehicles along the Town's 12 miles of ocean beaches.  Ocean lifeguards are in high demand and short supply, and in an effort to enhance the Town's recruitment efforts, the Emerald Isle Fire Department (which manages the lifeguard program) will soon be soliciting "host families" interested in providing housing for the Town's lifeguards this summer.  If you are interested in hosting an Emerald Isle lifeguard in your residence this summer, please contact the Emerald Isle Fire Department at 252-354-2445, or email Chief Walker at  bwalker@emeraldisle-nc.org .  Also, if you or someone you know is interested in serving as an Emerald Isle lifeguard this summer, it's not too early to express your interest.  Please contact the Emerald Isle Fire Department at the same phone number and email address to learn more about the lifeguard application process. 

The Town continually strives to enhance our beach safety services, and the 2018 lifeguard service plan represents the Town's largest effort ever.  The Town's lifeguard program typically includes up to 6 lifeguards on the beach each day during the height of the summer season, and is largely funded by regional access parking fees collected at the Town's two regional beach access facilities.  The Town continues to explore other ways to expand beach safety services, and will be considering the potential "sponsorship" of fixed lifeguard stands at specific commercial and/or residential locations in the future.   

Comprehensive Land Use Plan Certified by State of NC


The Town's 2017 Comprehensive Land Use Plan, adopted by the Board of Commissioners in early 2017, was recently officially certified by the State of North Carolina.  The new plan was developed over more than a year, was led by a special citizen steering committee appointed by the Board, and included significant public input. The new plan updated the Town's previous 2004 plan, and includes significant development policies and public investment goals that will guide the Town's future efforts.  A copy of the full plan and a summary document is available at https://www.emeraldisle-nc.org/cama-land-use-plan . 

Sponsor a Beach Swing!


The Town has resolved a minor permitting concern associated with its new beach swing program, and now has two new beach swings in place at the Western Ocean Regional Access and at The Point.  The new beach swings have been very popular, and are available to honor or memorialize loved ones at public beach access locations in Emerald Isle.  This program is modeled after the Town's popular bench program, and new beach swings can be constructed and installed for $1,000 each.  For more information, and to place your name on the waiting list, please contact Alesia Sanderson, Parks and Recreation Director, at 252-354-6350 or asanderson@emeraldisle-nc.org .



4th Annual Bike The Banks Rides - May 5, 2018!


Get on your bike, and join us for the 4th Annual "Bike The Banks" rides on Saturday, May 5! This increasingly popular event includes something for riders of all interests and abilities, including the 10-mile "Emerald Isle Ride", the 50-mile "Fort Macon Ride", and the 100-mile "Cape Lookout Ride".  A total of 140 riders participated in the 2017 event, which raised more than $5,000 toward future bicycle and pedestrian improvements in Emerald Isle.  To sign up, please visit  https://www.emeraldisle-nc.org/4th-annual-bike-the-banks-2018-05-05 .

Did You Know?

The Town's contractor, Simmons & Simmons Management, collects nearly 3,500 tons of residential trash and nearly 800 tons of recyclables in Emerald Isle each year.  In addition to promoting a healthier environment, each ton recycled results in $52.50 of avoided landfill tipping fees.  In total, the Town avoided more than $40,000 of landfill tipping fees through the recycling program, and every additional 100 tons will save the Town more than $5,000!  Please do your part, and recycle! For more information about the Town's recycling program, please visit https://www.emeraldisle-nc.org/garbage-recycling .   

Posted by Rhonda Ferebee Tuesday, February 6, 2018 5:58:00 PM